Choosing to Outsource

I don’t do my own accounting for my business – I hire a professional firm to do that for me. I have a lawyer who deals with any contracts or legal issues that I encounter. For marketing, I go to a company that specializes in that. For business advice and software consulting, I hire myself.

In any company, there are a multitude of tasks that need to be done in order to achieve success. All of these tasks can be broken down to either be:

  1. Central to your business;
  2. Needed by your business.

Central to your business

Tasks which are central to your business should rarely be outsourced. If your company specializes in graphic design, you should not outsource the design process, since that is what defines your company. Such tasks you need to retain full control over, as your entire company image hinges on how you accomplish those tasks.

You may choose to hire employees in order to grow, or to bring in contractors when the workload gets to be more than you can handle. But such tasks are ultimately your responsibility, and so you should keep them close.

Needed by your business

There are many tasks, though, which are necessary to be done, but don’t define your business. The accounting for your business is not something your clients would ever care about, or which company you use for advertising, or whether your website is hosted by a particular vendor.

These items can, and often are, outsourced to people or companies who define themselves by their ability to do such tasks. All you care about is that the task is done at a particular level of quality.

When you think about outsourcing, think about how the job fits into the above categories. Only items in the second category should even be under consideration.